A recent study by the Technical University of Rosenheim and the VHT Darmstadt under Jochen Pfau now confirms the gypsum industry’s long-standing view that there is no alternative to gypsum as a material for finishing and drywall construction. Even if wood and clay are repeatedly brought into play as substitute materials, they cannot play a significant role in the quantities required in Germany.
Due to the foreseeable decline in the amount of FGD gypsum available as a resource, future raw material requirements for gypsum products will increasingly have to be met by using gypsum deposits and recycling gypsum. With the recycling of gypsum products still in its infancy and limited overall in terms of available quantity, natural gypsum mining in Germany will continue to be the main source of gypsum raw materials.
The managing director of the German Gypsum Association, Holger Ortleb, comments: “The study thus makes a decisive contribution to clarifying and objectifying the current debate and also underlines the need to make sufficient areas available for gypsum extraction in Germany.”
The following quotes by Professor Pfau from the study support the assessment of the Gypsum Industry:
“Alternative systems are, in terms of usability proofs, simply years behind the gypsum industry.”
“It takes about twice the volume of clay than gypsum to produce the same number of panels, because current products are on average too heavy, thicker and additionally coated with clay plaster.”
“If I want to replace only one-fifth of the annual volume of gypsum board, then I need about 1000 km2 of forest per year to do so, virtually half the area of the Saarland, if forest management is sustainable.”
“Unused savings potential in dry construction measures lies, as always in construction, in construction site logistics, in construction management, construction planning, etc. There is still a lot that can be saved in materials here.”
“In dry construction, we are ultimately moving into an area that anyway stands for resource conservation and sustainability, and to fulfil a construction task with significantly less material.”